The Second Sunday In Lent The Gospel Matt.17.v.1. Wednesday Meditation

GOSPEL Matt. 17: 1-9 
At that time, Jesus taketh unto him Peter and James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into a high mountain apart: And he was transfigured before them. And his face did shine as the sun: and his garments became white as snow. And behold there appeared to them Moses and Elias talking with him. And Peter answering, said to Jesus: Lord, it is good for us to be here: if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles, one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias. And as he was yet speaking, behold a bright cloud overshadowed them. And lo a voice out of the cloud, saying: "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased: hear ye him." And the disciples hearing fell upon their face, and were very much afraid. And Jesus came and touched them: and said to them: "Arise, and fear not." And they lifting up their eyes, saw no one, but only Jesus. And as they came down from the mountain, Jesus charged them, saying: "Tell the vision to no man, till the Son of man be risen from the dead."


Here we may ask certain curious questions out of which we may draw some good instructions. And first though the reason were given in the precedent Meditation where some of th Apostles were left with Judas, and not all taken to the Transfiguration and Judas last alone: yet why three only, and those three:

The reason of it may be this.

The transfiguration of Christ being acted not only for the comfort and confirmation of them that were present, bt of the rest of the Apostles and disciples and all other Christians to the end of the world, it was necessary it should be in the presence of a competent number of eye witnesses. That number is at least tow or three: For as the law saith in the mouth of two or three witnesses standeth every word, that is to say, the proof of every thing.

Why these three more then others.

It may be because they were taken, as Saint Paul saith, to be principal men and pillars amongst the rest, as witnesses must be such, as no exception may be taken against them, such as Chrosts loved above the rest, and reposed greater trust upon then the res, To Peter his Church, to John his Mother, to James Jerusalem, that holy City, the most glorious City of the world and a figure of heaven.

To Peter principally as he was first named, because his office being to confirm his brethren, he might confirm them by this vision, as he did with great efficiency in one of his Epistles to the universal Church, worthy to be preserved.

Another question is this, while Moses appeared on one side of Christ, and elias one the other: Christ in the midst, taking together. Moses signifieth the law by whose hand it was given unto the people from the Mount Sina. Elias being the first and principal Prophet, signifieth the Prophets, Christ the Author and principal preacher of the gospel, the gospel. The gospel in the midst between Moss and Elias signifeth that the gospel was approved of the law, and Prophet both testifying of Christ, so plainly that the blindness of the Jews that could not see it, was very gross and culpable.

Likewise Moses being dead, Elias alive in the terrestrial paradise, the one on one side of Christ the other on the other, signify two sundry states of people, Moses and the Clergy, consisting of secular and religious priests and the other prelates and ministers of the Church: who are as it were dead to the world.

Elias who liveth in Paradise, the lay people that enjoy the comforts and delights of the world, so far forth as is lawful and convenient for their estate.

Both these Christ embraceth the one with one arm stretched out to the other: with the other both these are to concur together for the good of the Church and commonwealth, like brethren, both these together make a perfect and complete commonwealth, and they must agree together like brethren, or else all is naught.

For this cause did God say, unto Moses, the government of his people in temporal affairs, apply unto thee Aaron thy brother, that he may exercise the office of priesthood to me. And if there arise any controversy between the Clergy and the laity, the Clergy must carry themselves as Abraham did unto Lot. Who when he & Lot dwelt together, and there chanced to be controversy between their households ( having great store of Cattle, and stock, and servants that played the pick thancks, and firebrands between them, as the fashion is, and the Masters peradventure ready to take part said unto Lot, his nephew: I pray thee, let there not be discord between thee and me, for we are brethren that is to say kinsfolk (as the phrase of Scripture is.) View the country & take thy choice. Dwell where then wilt (for all the country was theirs) if thou go to the right hand, I will go to the left, that is to say: I will take thy leaving. This holy Abraham did, rather then he would lose peace, and amity with his kinsman. This must clergy men do, towards the laity, if need require to conserve peace, and sometimes to lose some little part of their right, rather then peace, and much more amongst themselves, is of much more importance and edification if it be kept, and much more scandal, if it be broken.

A Plaine Path-way To Heaven Thomas Hill 1634


Popular Posts